Two words spring to mind when looking at this card, welterweight and power! This card could shape the welterweight division for years to come with the current top 3 fighters in the weight class and a few names that are looking to break into the top ten this year.
Johny Hendricks vs Robbie Lawler – Vacant UFC Welterweight Title
Following GSP’s vacation of the welterweight title, there is a huge gap to fill and Hendricks was the obvious first choice contender following his controversial loss to the Canadian. You would think that the next most obvious choice would have been #2 ranked Condit but we think pretty much everyone is overjoyed that the UFC went for Lawler. This fight just has to finish with a TKO as both fighters have huge knockout power, anything else will just be a disappointment. Lawler has so much experience and after dealing with Rory MacDonald in his last fight, it could just be his time.
Prediction: Lawler via TKO
Carlos Condit vs Tyron Woodley
If the above fight didn’t happen, Woodley vs Lawler would have been one we would have loved to see and it may still happen depending on these two results. Woodley is another welterweight that hits extremely hard and interestingly, both of these fighters have a decision loss to Jake Shields who is also on the card. Condit has never been knocked out and will certainly be tested by Woodley who will also be the better wrestler so expect this to end up with a finish.
Prediction: Woodley via TKO
Diego Sanchez vs Myles Jury
After being part of one of the fights of the year in October, Sanchez remains a hugely popular fighter even though he was completely outclassed in that decision loss. Jury is undefeated in thirteen fights but this is a huge step up in competition for him as the only name of note on his record so far is Michael Johnson. Having previously finished all his fights, two of the last three have ended in decision so a stoppage over Sanchez would do wonders for him.
Prediction: Jury via Decision
Jake Shields vs Hector Lombard
Two more extremely experienced and ranked welterweights on the card in Shields and Lombard who boast a spectacular sixty-two wins combined with only ten losses, two draws and two NC. Shields has fought pretty much everyone in the weight class with some great wins whereas Lombard has recently dropped down from middleweight after two tough split decision losses. Shields is somewhat of a decision specialist of late whereas Lombard has never been stopped and only gone to decision twelve times in thirty-nine fights. A finish over Shields would propel Lombard right up towards the top five in the division.
Prediction: Lombard via TKO
UFC 171 Prelims Predictions
Ovince Saint Preux vs Nikita Krylov – Preux via TKO
Kevin Gastelum vs Rick Story – Gastelum via Decision
Raquel Pennington vs Jessica Andrade – Andrade via TKO
Dennis Bermudez vs Jimy Hettes – Hettes via Submission
Sean Spencer vs Alex Garcia Garcia via TKO
Renee Forte vs Francisco Trevino – Forte via Decision
Will Campuzano vs Justin Scoggins – Scoggins via TKO
Bubba McDaniel vs Sean Strickland – Strickland via TKO
Daniel Pineda vs Rob Whiteford – Whiteford via TKO
A huge thirteen fights to watch, here are the viewing times:
Early Prelims – UFC Fight Pass: Saturday 15th 22:00
Prelims – BT Sport: Sunday 16th 00:00
Main card – BT Sport: Sunday 16th 02:00
Like it? Love it? Hate it? What are your predictions?